Egg maturation and bacteriocyte inclusion in Bemisia gigantea Martin (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae)
Rosemarie C. Rosell, email@example.com, Marc T. Coombs, Marc.Coombs@csiro.au2, Heather S. Costa, firstname.lastname@example.org, and Paul De Barro, Paul.DeBarro@csiro.au2. (1) University of St. Thomas, Biology, 3800 Montrose Blvd, Houston, TX, (2) CSIRO, Entomology, Long Pocket Laboratories, Indooroopilly, Queensland, Australia, (3) University of California, Department of Entomology, Entomology Building, Riverside, CA
In most Aleyrodidae, egg maturation and bacteriocyte inclusion into the egg begins as soon as the adult female emerges. In the whitefly, Bemisia gigantea, a species native to lowland tropical rainforests of North Queensland, Australia, we have found that egg maturation begins much earlier during the developmental process. The female reproduction system of B. gigantea becomes evident in fourth instar nymphs, with extensive accumulation of mature (chorionated) eggs occurring 1-2 days prior to adult eclosion. Unlike related whiteflies that have two bilaterally distinct bacteriomes, bacteriocytes (specialised cells containing bacterial endosymbionts) of B. gigantea appeared scattered through the abdominal region in close association with the developing eggs. In fourth instar nymphs, bacteriocytes enter developing eggs basally through the pedicel, and after oviposition move distally from the pedicel as the embryo matures. In addition, developing ova without bacteriocytes were evident in 3-day-old females, indicating that oogenesis and bacteriocyte inclusion is an on going process.
Species 1: Hemiptera Aleyrodidae Bemisiagigantea Keywords: reproductive physiology, endosymbionts